"Until the harvest"

When the Master explained the parable of the wheat and the tares to his disciples, they must have been greatly impressed with his wisdom. His explanation showed the reason for the temporary toleration of the tares, but he counseled this necessary delay without in the slightest degree departing from his condemnation of the tares, or of the one who had sown them. He made it perfectly clear that the principal thing to be taken into consideration was the wheat, and that nothing should be done which might injure the growing grain. What he had in view was not that the tares were deserving of consideration,—they were not there of their own responsibility,—but that "the children of the kingdom," whom he had symbolized by the wheat, should "shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father."

To permit the tares to remain until the harvest, when they could either be uprooted without damage to the wheat, or else when cut down easily separated and thrown aside to be burned as refuse, would require much patience and much forbearance on the part of the owner of the field; but the results would justify the wisdom of this course. Not only would the tares be destroyed, but the wheat would finally be free from them and its usefulness and value be undiminished. On page 300 of Science and Health, Mrs. Eddy has made apt use of this teaching of the Master in drawing the distinction between mortal man and the real or spiritual man of God's creating. She says: "The temporal and unreal never touch the eternal and real. The mutable and imperfect never touch the immutable and perfect. The inharmonious and self-destructive never touch the harmonious and self-existent. These opposite qualities are the tares and wheat, which never really mingle, though (to mortal sight) they grow side by side until the harvest; then, Science separates the wheat from the tares, through the realization of God as ever present and of man as reflecting the divine likeness."

Probably no other teaching of Christ Jesus expresses such sublime patience as does this parable of the wheat and the tares, and certainly none other expresses in a greater degree the necessity for singleness of purpose in our efforts to realize the kingdom of heaven. Christian Scientists must not, however, overlook another lesson to be gained from this parable, namely, that it is necessary for them to be so familiar with the product of the good seed that they will be able to discard the tares. Should they fail in this, the whole harvest would be wasted and famine would result.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

"As a lamp that burneth"
May 30, 1914

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.